THOSE DEVILISH Teases have just returned from a weekend in North Carolina in time for their second annual Halloween show, "Night of the Terrifying Teases." From The Black Widow to Leatherface, your favorite villains will take the stage in the troupe's signature brand of slinky seduction and side-spitting playfulness.
We caught up with founders Wendy Denney, Jessica Knapp, and Anita Narcisse to get the scoop on touring with over a dozen glitter-and-blood encrusted dancers and what’s in store for fans on Saturday.
So how was the tour?
Denney: It was awesome! We sold out Asheville for the second time. ...We had guest performers in both cities who perform in burlesque troops there.
Knapp: That's my favorite part of touring, is that we get to know some burlesque performers in other cities. They give us perspective on what they're doing.
What's it like touring with so many people?
Narcisse: It's herding cats on a daily basis!
Denney: We get along really well, so that's helpful. We make friends every time we go places, and everyone is so nice and accommodating. A lot of the people who are helping us are in bands or something, so they always give us tips on how to save money and always try to hook us up with places to crash.
You're touring your new Halloween show. Have you done that before—performed a new show out of town before Savannah?
Narcisse: Yes, the Celebri-Tease Show. We like it a lot better, because we get to practice doing it two more times before the home crowd. We get super pumped, and we're feeding off the energy of the anticipation of doing it for a crowd of people we're not familiar in a different city.
Denney: And then we can work out any kinks. We always want Savannah to be the biggest, baddest show.
Knapp: The people in Savannah know us, and we have a good fan base here. When we succeed doing it in a city where we don't know anybody, it just makes us that more excited.
Anything in particular to look forward to for this show?
Denney: In my opinion, this is our best show yet. Every single act is so badass.
Knapp: We have a drag moment in our show this year, so one of our boys will be performing twice, once as a boy and once as a girl.
Narcisse: And it's just amazing how he can pull off both so well—
Knapp: –and how different the personalities are!
Denney: We have an act where we'll bring an audience member on stage. Our band is Crazy Bag Lady—and they have a surprise, as well.
Knapp: We have a couple that are some of the most hardcore, sexy acts we've done. Not traditional, but a little more on the traditional side where you're like—dayyy-um!
Stylistically, how do you feel this one might differ from the last Halloween show?
Denney: It's more cohesive, I would say. Last time it was like, sexy vs. scary. And this year, it's villains. It has more of a theme, like our other shows do.
Knapp: I always help out with the decorations for The Jinx, and they always kind of affect each other. They're definitely going to pair up.
They're doing a '70s horror movie theme, right?
Knapp: Yeah. And we have Freddy, we have a Leatherface—they're all from movies.
How long does it take y'all to prep for each show?
Denney: We do 8 weeks for each show. We do 6-8 rehearsals, then we have a dress rehearsal at the Jinx, and then we also have craft nights.
Knapp: We'll be starting our Christmas stuff on Sunday. It's pretty intense!
Anything you'd like attendees to know?
Denney: Don't wear your favorite shirt. There are some tarps involved...there's some things...
Knapp: You don't wanna miss it.